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37 terms

biological psychology

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phrenology
bumps on the skull believed to reveal our mental abilities and character traits
biological psychologists
study links between biological activity and psychological events
neurons
interconnected cells that help fathom our thoughts and actions, memories and moods
sensory neurons
carry messages from the body's tissues and sensory organs inward to the brain and spinal cord
motor neurons
carry outoging information from the brain and spinal cord to the muscles and glands
interneurons
within the brain and spinal cord. communicate internally and intervene between the sensory inputs and motor outputs
dendrite
neural fibers that receive information and conduct it toward the cell body
axon
passes messages from cell body to neurons, muscles or glands
myelin sheath
covers the axon of some neurons and helps speed neural impulse
action potential
neural impulse. brief electrical charge that travels down an axon
threshold
the level of stimulation required to trigger a neural response
synapse
meeting point between neurons. causes brief interruption in transmission
neurotransmitters
chemical messengers that cross synaptic gaps between neurons
reuptake
a neurotransmitter's reabsorption by the sending neuron
endorphins
natural, opiate-like neurotransmitters linked to pain control and pleasure
psychoactive drugs
change perceptions and moods thru their actions at the neural synapses
tolerance
the diminishing effect of drugs with regular use, requiring a user to take successively larger doses to feel the same effect
neuroadaption
brain adapts its chemistry to offset the drug's effect
withdrawal
discomfort and distress that follow discontinuing the use of an addictive drug
physical dependence
physiological need for a drug, marked by withdrawal
psychological dependence
mental need to use a drug because of associations made with it
addiction
compulsive drug craving and use despite adverse consequences
depressants
drugs that calm neural activity and slow body functions
expectancy effects
behavioral effects that stem from the user's expectations
stimulants
drugs that excite neural activity and speed up body functions
hallucinogens
drugs that distort perceptions and evoke sensory images in the absence of sensory input
terminal button
located at the end of the neuron and responsible for sending the signal on to other neurons
lesion
tissue destruction
EEG
amplified recording of the waves of electrical acitivty that cross the brain's surface
PET
depictrs brain activies by showing brain consumption of glucose
fMRI
reveals bloodflow in the brain
MRI
brain scans that produce computer-generated images of soft tissue
cerebrum
two large hemispheres of the brain
glial cells
cells in nervous system that support, nourish and protect neurons. Provide nutrients and myelin
plasticity
brain's ability to modify itself after some types of damage
association areas
areas in cerebral cortex not involved in primary motor or sensory functions but higher mental processes
neurogeneses
formation of new neurons